Network’s Annual Meeting Includes Interdisciplinary Skills Workshop

Students participating in the Interdisciplinary Skills Workshop 2016
August 27, 2016

The annual meeting of the Sustainable Healthy Cities Network convened on August 25th in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The first component of the meeting was a course for graduate students on Interdisciplinary Environmental Study of Urban Sustainability.  32 students from all 8 of the participating universities gathered to learn the Network’s research design and practical application of a research framework to help inform policy and action.

Students learned how interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral approaches can address grand challenges in urban settings.  Tours to distributed infrastructure sites around the University of Minnesota and the City of St. Paul highlighted real-world solutions.

Engaging with Network faculty and city partners in the next few days will introduce students to best practices for working across academia, private sector, government, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).


Co-PI Orlove Connects Urban Planning and Glacial Flooding

August 25, 2016
SRN Co-PI, Benjamin Orlove, Columbia University,  was a keynote speaker at the International Glacier and Mountain Ecosystems Forum, held 10-12 August in Huaraz, Ancash region, Peru. The event was hosted by a newly formed organization, the National Research Institute on Glaciers and Mountain Ecosystems, whose goals are to promote research and action on these climate change issues.

Professor Orlove’s SRN research and the goals of this group overlap on the topic of urban planning. “Peru is highly unusual in that, in mountain regions, though the towns have higher income and access to government services than the rural areas, the towns are also more vulnerable to glacier lake outburst floods. The towns are concentrated along major rivers. The rural agricultural people live more scattered on hillsides. so there are the issues of promoting early warning systems, despite people’s unwillingness to evacuate even when warnings are issued. They fear that thieves will come to evacuated areas. Weak planning/enforcement leads to rebuilding in flood zones, which are close to transport routes, despite risks,” says Orlove.

Learn more at ABC News.